There is a myriad of reasons for relationships to run off track. The main derailers to relationship bliss are inevitably unveiled by the same root causes. If there is a year that would send anyone off the rails to financial chaos and concern, it is 2020!
The greatest outcome is a “united front” when it comes to aligning yourselves on the important and inevitable aspects of life - death, money and taxes! You can’t take your hard-earned coin with you to the first one, so you may as well get your finances back on track so you can include some fun with it together beforehand, particularly in the lead up to Christmas!
I was recently requested to speak on The Property Couch podcast on money derailers for relationships so here are my top financial quandaries I notice most couples face:
1. Deceit and lack of transparency: the pressures on the main income earner can find them hiding loans, discrepancies in transactions and secret accounts as a result of shame and guilt for poor financial decisions. Stereotypically, women will hide money to pay for such expenses as cosmetic enhancements or clothes.
2. Differing Values: it is common for couples to vary in their high or low-risk approach to managing money and investments. This isn’t necessarily bad except when goals are misaligned!
3. Lack of safety: a partner who not in paid employment or earning less than their partner can feel unsafe due to the lack of perceived financial security when money matters are kept completely separate. Although women are breaking the glass ceiling, I notice they stereotypically still flourish with nurture, protection, and assurance of financial security!
4. Controlling behaviours: it is sadly not uncommon for partners to hide or control money from their partner to prevent them from leaving. This is abuse.
5. Misallocated Roles: the partner who is least adept at managing money is often allocated responsibility for paying bills and making financial decisions.
Top 5 Tips to Avoid Money Matters Derailing Your Relationship
1. Be a united force to align values from the outset of the relationship so there is less room for shocking surprises.
2. Educate yourself on wealth creation with books, podcasts and apps to track your progress. Even better, educate your children.
3. Avoid being a financial victim of your family's legacy of financial mismanagement or an impoverished mindset. A vast majority of the relationships I support are people raised from poor relationship mentors that featured challenges such as infidelity, money mistakes and a legacy of separation and divorce.
4. Realise that topics around money are often blamed for relationship breakdown, however the root cause is a symptom of The Three Corrosive C's: Crushed Confidence, Poor Communication and Conflict skills.
5. Romance does not require copious amounts of money to keep your relationship alive whilst saving! It is the emotional attentiveness and the effort put into the daily habits and small gestures!
Don’t be too hard on yourselves if you’ve found yourself fast-tracked off the rails when it comes to financial conundrums! Why? Your relationship mentors, parents or grandparents were less likely to require wisdom on how to collaborate with their spouse in areas such as finances and how to raise the children. They didn’t need to check in with each other as their relationships featured more clearly defined, traditional roles that didn’t overlap so much. This is in comparison to today’s common tag team situation—symptomatic of both parents working outside the home where we collide on work, managing finances, home duties and parenting decisions.
Learning how to blend two cultures in every relationship can be a beautiful yet challenging task! Learning to respectfully, kindly acknowledge and listen to what is important to each other is paramount. If you’re omitting information, it is your red flag for deceit so have the courage to be open and honest with your partner to align yourselves for financial success in 2021 and beyond!
This article featured in the Sunshine Coast Daily.
Joanne Wilson is the Relationship Rejuvenator and author of Renovate Your Relationship – All The DIY Tools For Your Most Important Project ($29.99). She is a neuropsychotherapist inspiring the community for thriving and dynamic relationships that impact generations for mental well-being. Find out more at www.relationshiprejuvenator.com
Joanne will be your Confidante, enabling you to speak freely in complete confidence and serenity. An integrated approach tailored to your specific needs will be utilised.
Joanne will be your Confidante, enabling you to speak freely in complete confidence and serenity. An integrated approach tailored to your specific needs will be utilised. Approaches such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Solution Focussed Therapy and Emotionally Focussed Therapy may be incorporated.
Relationship Specialist for Individuals and Couples online around the world and servicing areas for face to face sessions including Caloundra, Noosa, Noosaville, Buderim, Mountain Creek, Gympie.